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EU foreign policy

With the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty in 2009 and its subsequent implementation, the European Union has gradually assembled the constituent elements of a sui generis 'foreign policy', bringing together various competencies, instruments and resources that were hitherto spread across different institutions and bodies. Although the process is still on-going and progress is, in parts, uneven, certain traits of a more coherent common approach to foreign policy-making are now evident. In the Balkans, the Horn of Africa (both offshore and onshore), the Sahel, or the Middle East, joint and combined forms of external action - including diplomacy, enlargement, CSDP and development activities - are now producing more effective and lasting results.

Analysing the specific actors, instruments, policies, and strategies at the disposal of the Union and assessing their scope and outreach is also a way to illustrate what the EU does in the world - something which is not always known or appreciated by those who directly benefit from its external action, or indeed by European citizens at large. Monitoring performance, in turn, also contributes to improving it, in a constructive manner and on the basis of factual evidence.

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  • 19December 2005

    The EUISS held a seminar in order to exchange information on the state of affairs in the countries of the Western Balkans on the eve of Kosovo status negotiations, and to assess the likely impact of the latter on the region.

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    01December 2005
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    Historically speaking, security and defence are late arrivals on the European agenda. But like all young things, the European security and defence policy is growing fast. We have put in place the necessary decision-making structures and launched a process to enhance European capabilities, which has been given fresh impetus with the creation of the European Defence Agency.

  • 02November 2005

    This note assesses the impact of the political crisis affecting the EU in the wake of the constitutional referenda, specifically with reference to the image and performance of the Union in the wider international world. The basic assumption is that the viability of CFSP and of EC external relations largely depends on the political cohesion of the EU.

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    26October 2005
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    In November 2004, the EU set forth a new framework for policy towards Belarus. The regional context around Belarus has since changed dramatically, with an enlarged EU, a 'revolutionary' Ukraine, a more defensive Russia and more active US. EU policy may be strengthened to reflect and work with these changes.

  • 16October 2005

    Groucho Marx famously stated that he would never join a club that would accept him as a member. Today, the Turkish leadership might be well advised to take the same approach to the European Union (EU). Membership for the sake of it should not be the objective. Accession will only succeed when the Union is confident enough to welcome Turkey among its members.

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    01October 2005

    The rapid modernisation of the People's Liberation Army, Beijing's increasingly threatening stance vis-à-vis Taiwan and its demand for energy are the main factors driving America's preoccupation with China. All sectors of opinion in the US criticised the EU's declared intention to lift its embargo on arms exports to China. This policy was misunderstood and its implications exaggerated.

  • 01October 2005

    Le plus fascinant dans la crise européenne est qu'elle plombe toutes les énergies, y compris la volonté d’en parler. Une sorte de conspiration du silence s'est en effet installée sur l'ensemble des pays européens, à tel point que l'on peut se demander s'il s'est vraiment passé quelque chose ou si la Constitution valait finalement l'importance vitale qu'on lui avait prêtée

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    01October 2005

    Alors que la crise européenne s’installe dans la durée, c’est au tour des Etats-Unis de connaître une crise similaire, de gouvernance et de confiance, qui fait de Katrina, selon la très juste formule de Karl Kaiser, un phénomène géopolitique de première ampleur.

  • 26September 2005

    For the fourth consecutive year, Javier Solana, High Representative for the CFSP, opened the Institute's Annual Conference, held in Paris on Monday, 26 September.

  • 01September 2005

    Sous l'effet de l'implosion de l'URSS, d'un côté, et de la mondialisation, de l'autre, le contexte stratégique a complètement changé au cours des 15 dernières années. De nouvelles menaces telles que l'hyper-terrorisme, la prolifération des armes de destruction massive et le crime organisé ont remplacé le danger d'une confrontation militaire massive.

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